Pop Music (But Only on My Radio)

After writing my last post on Major Lazer and DJ Snake’s “Lean On” I realized that often when I write about pop music on this blog I tend to throw in a caveat about liking it until I get sick of it. It made me think about how I consume what is typically considered pop music. I obviously am a music lover. I am still the weirdo in this day and age who buys lots of albums.

The thing about pop music though is I really only consume it by listening to it on the radio or through inevitably hearing it being played over speakers while out and about in the world. I rarely if ever buy pop music. If I do it’s pretty much only ever the single and not the album. Most likely though I don’t buy it at all. On the rare occasion I choose to listen to those songs outside of my car radio is through Spotify or YouTube. I guess that’s the way most people these days are listening to pop music, so I’m at least right on point with that.

It’s obviously not that I don’t like pop music. I’ve written lovingly about a number of pop music songs on this blog. Mostly to me pop music fits a very specific function in my music filled life, and the function is to be disposable enjoyment while I’m driving. I mean that in the best way possible. Pop music signifies a specific time. It even moreso than the music I collect and listen to over and over again is what I associate with specific events or time periods in my life. It’s the stuff that penetrates throughout a specific time but then mostly fades away. Sometimes it endures on the soft rock or oldies stations, but much of it burns bright and then gets over played until people can’t stand to hear it ever again.

It sounds a little ridiculous to say, but I like pop music for what I like it for. I’m never going to be the one buying pop music albums or fighting to see those artists in large arena shows. The artists I connect with on that level are not generally the people whose songs wind up on pop radio. However, I’m also not the obnoxious hipster that looks down my nose at pop music as if it’s beneath me. I appreciate it for what it is in my life and don’t begrudge anyone enjoying music in ways different from me. I’m just glad I live in a time when it’s easy for me to access not just the pop music on the radio, but all kinds of other music as well.

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